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Is it too late (PIL related - long)

(42 Posts)
Dinosaurporn Wed 30-Oct-13 23:55:12

I have name changed for this just in case...
In an nutshell we have a chequered history with my PILs, starting with their arrival at our house when DS was less than a week old. They basically sat around our house, treating it like it was a hotel offering no support whatsoever.

Then on the morning of their departure the told DH that we "weren't to be expecting them to be babysiting" mainly because "we've had our children and now it's your turn". PILs live over a 2 hour drive away, so it's not like we would be expecting them to pop over to lend a hand.

As a result of this and a number of other things, I now won't visit them at their home, but DH does take the DCs over to them. They rarely come to us and even when they visit the city we live in, they don't bother to come over and see our DCs.

Recently my parents have moved closer to us and now see the DCs weekly. DH thinks that MIL is feeling a bit jealous about the amount my parents see the DCs.

The PIL visited earlier this week and MIL has told DH that from next year when they retire (they both work part time), they are happy to come down and babysit for us. Suggesting that they could even cover the childcare when I'm at work.

I have said to DH that it's too little, too late. They have shown very little interest in the DCs to the point that my youngest has no idea who they are. I have no interest in them babysitting for us and I have made it clear to DH that I will keep paying out for childcare and I won't be leaving the DCs with them in the foreseeable future.


Valdeeves Wed 30-Oct-13 23:58:17

Nope, I think you are right.

CoconutRing Wed 30-Oct-13 23:59:54

YANBU. Too little too late.

TheEarlOfDoncaster1963 Thu 31-Oct-13 00:00:33

You do right. It's too late - they don't have a relationship with your children and it's their own selfish fault.

fuzzywuzzy Thu 31-Oct-13 00:03:38

Remind your DH of what they said to you at the beginning and their current lack of interest.

If you cancel your childcare based on their vague plans you'll end up without childcare when you need to go work.

YANBU, tell your husband you'll see how they feel closer to the time, bet they'll be off on cruises etc.

ScarerAndFuckItsAGhost Thu 31-Oct-13 00:03:59

Is there any chance that they have realised that they have missed out, entirely through their own fault, and are genuinely wanting to make that up to you and the children?

If there's more to it that you've said in your OP, and there usually is in these situations (I know, I have terrible PILs and am sympathetic to anyone who is in the same situation) then that might not be the case but if you think they are genuinely remorseful about missing out on their grandchildren, perhaps you could work on that and slowly build up the relationship.

If you think it's just jealousy and won't last, then that's another matter, but if it's genuine and you think your children will benefit then it might be worth slowly building on.

whysoglum Thu 31-Oct-13 00:05:22

I agree with you.
Had a similar experience when my dc was born, was told that I'd made them uncomfortable and that I didn't want them there (I was in agony and very upset).
Now they're asking when they can see dc and I feel like saying never.

If she's actually sorry or had a genuine charge of mind then perhaps you could allow more access but I'd be suspicious like you.

Nanny0gg Thu 31-Oct-13 00:12:39

Not saying you're wrong, Dinosaurporn, but I do wonder what the IL's version of these threads would be.

Did they feel unwelcome from the get-go?

Dinosaurporn Thu 31-Oct-13 00:28:00

I think the IL version would be that I didn't treat them the way that guests should be treated (DH is male so he is clearly exempt from any hostess duties grin). I didn't make much effort to entertain them as I had a small baby hang off my chest for most of the day.

Mind you we are talking about the MIL who fed my cows milk intolerant DS milk behind my back and then when DS had "digested" the milk refused to let me run his diarrhea soaked clothes through the washing machine.

I just can't see where they are coming from with this. They have shown no interest in the DCs - they have even misspelt their names in their birthday cards!

CanucksoontobeinLondon Thu 31-Oct-13 00:45:33

Someone who lives two hours away cannot cover childcare. It's simply not practical even if you did want them to, which you don't.

It could be they feel bad about having been so spectacularly uninvolved earlier, and are trying to make up for it now. Also possible it's the green-eyed monster at work over your mom getting more time (although your mom is probably a lot more helpful). Not suggesting you should leave the kids with them, but maybe increase the amount of time they spend with your kids by a small amount. If it goes well, you've lost nothing. If it goes badly, you'll know your initial feeling was right.

MrsTerryPratchett Thu 31-Oct-13 00:48:03

Mind you we are talking about the MIL who fed my cows milk intolerant DS milk behind my back and then when DS had "digested" the milk refused to let me run his diarrhea soaked clothes through the washing machine.

Those people would babysit my child when flying pigs came to tell me that hell had frozen over. Actually, not even then.

MrTumblesKnickers Thu 31-Oct-13 02:47:11

Sounds like a bit of whimsy on their part. The competition with your own parents that's driving this idea would probably run out of steam pretty quickly when faced with the reality of actual regular childcare.

All the same, I wouldn't call their bluff. Just say that you have your routines in place and you and the children are perfectly happy with how everything currently is, thank you.

Dinosaurporn Thu 31-Oct-13 21:40:54

Well DH thinks that she's just jealous of my parents being closer. He reckons that she's also scared of being bored after she retires and sees this as an opportunity to have a new hobby.

It's not going to happen and I'm also preparing myself for declining lots more visits now she needs something to do. I've always said to DH that the DC's aren't toys there for his parents entertainment, who then get dropped when they get bored.

I can see this being an ongoing problem.

GobbolinoCat Thu 31-Oct-13 21:45:51

Umm just before reading your last post OP I thought, she is staring retirement in the face and wondering what she is going to do....also do not forget work colleagues and friends will all be saying " how great you will have all this extra time with the GC" etc.

I most definalty would not agree to child care however I am a believer in second chances, to see the gc again. Just not on a routine basis.

WhoNickedMyName Thu 31-Oct-13 21:51:02

Realistically, if they live 2 hours away, then if they're not seriously trying to make amends, or this is some kind of new hobby or 'novelty' for them, then it'll soon wear off.

If they are serious and committed to building a relationship with their grandchildren and put in the legwork then it'll soon become obvious.

Daycare/Childcare (I assume you mean while you're both at work) is just not practical. But further down the line if they've proved this isn't a whim, you could be glad of a chance for an evening/overnight babysitter - don't rule it out yet grin.

I'd be non committal at this point and wait and see.

Dinosaurporn Thu 31-Oct-13 22:53:34

As much as I wouldn't want them in my house alone, I also feel quite mean.

LunaticFringe Thu 31-Oct-13 23:00:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LuvMyBoyz Thu 31-Oct-13 23:01:45

I think your DC have a right to get to know both sets of grand parents even if you don't like them.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Thu 31-Oct-13 23:24:30

My PIL provide childcare for my SIL 2 DC (looking after them when SIL works, picking up after school, dropping off at school, weekends, sleeping over)

They sometimes said "Oh it's a shame you don't live closer we could look after them".

They came to visit once since I had the DC (every other time I had to visit them, an 8 hour drive)

FIL was "too busy" to watch DS (but he was looking after D Nephew)

MIL took my DD out in her pram for , ooh about ten minutes.

So I didn't really rate their "Oh we'd love to look after them"

And FIL smoked. Continually. With my toddler DS yards from him angry

Dinosaurporn Thu 31-Oct-13 23:25:52

I've never stopped them visiting us here nor my DH taking them up to his parents house. Unfortunately they don't even visit the DCs even when they happen to be in the same city. There's not much I can do about that.

Dinosaurporn Thu 31-Oct-13 23:26:39

At least they don't smoke 70!

70isaLimitNotaTarget Thu 31-Oct-13 23:28:54

I got CatsBumFace many times from MIL when I tried to get DS away from the smoke by offering him a biscuit.

"He won't eat his tea"

No but he won't be kippered either

70isaLimitNotaTarget Thu 31-Oct-13 23:33:43

There are advantages Dinosaur in having a considerable distance between yourself and your PILs grin

When my DC were very little I had one rule for my parents.
I didn't mind if they bought sweets or Greggs.
My only stipulation was they had their reins as little toddlers and when they were bigger, they walked away from the road.
MIL didn't even bother to hold DS reins at a bus-stop , as we were driving away with DD. (DS was under 3yo)


But I still took them because I accepted the DC needed a relationship and I just had to bite my tongue.

Dinosaurporn Thu 31-Oct-13 23:46:35

The problem (and blessing) about the distance is when they do decide to visit it's never short...

70isaLimitNotaTarget Thu 31-Oct-13 23:51:33

I have to visit them, so when I've driven all day (with DC) and have a numb drivers bottom, I'm in PIL house...

And I cannot have a dump in MIL loo blush TMI. So I get mega bunged up into the bargain.

(I've just realised I'm turning this into a competitive awful PIL type posting ) wink

Or thlwink

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